Saudi Arabia’s Role in Backing Terrorism Raises Concerns with $100 Billion Arms Deal

Last year, Congress overwhelmingly passed the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act (JASTA) to allow the family members of those killed in the 9/11 attacks to sue the government of Saudi Arabia for any part it played in those acts of terrorism.

President Obama vetoed JASTA, but Congress voted to override the veto.

Now, less than a year after Congress voted to let the victims and the families of victims of 9/11 sue Saudi Arabia, the current administration is proposing the largest-ever arms sale to Saudi Arabia.

The arms sale allows the Saudis to immediately get nearly $110 billion in American weapons and an unimaginable $350 billion in arms over 10 years.

After the veto override, former U.S. Senator Bob Graham stated, “[F]rom what I know today, there is ample evidence that 9/11 would not have happened but for the assistance provided by Saudi Arabia.” He went on to say, “The results of that assistance was (nearly) 3,000 persons murdered, 90 percent of them Americans. And a new wave of terrorism with Saudi financial and operational support has beset the world.”

The sale includes laser-guided bombs in the form of Paveway II and III weapons systems, as well as Joint Direct Attack Munitions (JDAM), guidance that converts unguided bombs into smart munitions.

Selling military weapons to questionable allies is not in our national security interest. At some point, the United States must stop and realize that we are fueling an arms race in the Middle East.

…continue reading

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